Family-run Tex-Mex salsas into Carrollton with brunch and good deals

A family-owned Mexican restaurant known for its distinctively fresh Tex-Mex has debuted in a familiar location in Carrollton. called Chips & Salsa Tex-Mex and Cantina, it opened in a former Cindi’s Deli at 2001 Midway Rd. #132, where it’s serving fajitas, enchiladas, breakfast, brunch, and margaritas in a multitude of flavors.

Chips & Salsa opened their first location in Garland in May 2019, followed by a second location in Wylie which they bravely opened in December 2020. The new Carrollton location is actually a relocation of their Garland original, which closed in late 2021.

The restaurant is from Manuel Perez with general manager Oliver Valdez proficiently running the day-to-day.

As befits a place called Chips & Salsa, their chips and salsa game is strong: They make their own chips in house, cutting corn tortillas into large triangles, asymmetrical so you know it’s fresh, resulting in thick crunchy chips that are golden in color.

All of the chip accompaniments are on the money: salsa made in house with a serious kick, and queso available in traditional or white version, spiked with chorizo ​​or mushrooms, or a deluxe with guacamole and ground beef.

Guacamole is fresh and chunky, and you can get it prepared tableside. Other starters include bacon-wrapped jalapeños stuffed with monterey jack cheese.

Specials include shrimp brochette with sautéed veggies, rice, and charro beans; and chicken with sour cream sauce, or salsa verde, or mole, or chicken poblano. Chile rellenos can be ordered stuffed with choice of cheese, chicken, brisket, beef, or shrimp.

They use good fresh ingredients, often with a twist — such as the fajitas, which include not only bell pepper and onion, but also fried wedges of potato, skin still on. Fajita options include chicken, chicken & mushroom, salmon, rib eye steak, or veggie only, which is a fresh and unusual choice.

They have a good touch on seafood with dishes such as ceviche, caldo de mariscos, and diablo shrimp in a fine hot red sauce, served with rice and mixed vegetables that include zucchini, chayote & yellow squash, onion, mushroom, and poblano pepper, with everything cut into large enough chunks that they still have body.

Fish tacos made with flaky tilapia — sporting appealing grill marks and rolled into corn tortillas — come with rice, refried beans, and a chunky salad-slaw with cabbage, shaved carrot, cucumber, celery with celery leaves, and chopped green bell pepper. Other taco fillers include shrimp, salmon, brisket, or tacos al carbon.

Fresh salads include one with salmon over mixed greens with melon, papaya, grapes, and chopped apple, come on, how often do you see that at a Tex-Mex place?

Lunch prices stretch from 11 am-4 pm weekdays and feature combination plates such as two tacos or a chicken trio with an enchilada, taco, and tamale. Other good deals include $10.99 chicken fajitas on Mondays; enchiladas at lunch price all day Wednesday; and an especially long happy hour that runs Monday-Friday from 11 am-7 pm.

Desserts look fabulous including churros, tres leches cake with three layers, and apple pie served on a hot platter with a scoop of vanilla ice cream. They make menudo on Saturdays and Sundays, when they also serve breakfast and brunch, opening at 9 am with rib eye & eggs, French toast with strawberries, eggs & brisket, eggs & chorizo, chilaquiles, huevos rancheros, spicy Bloody Marys for $5, $4 Mimosas, fiery Palomas, and acclaimed micheladas.

Margaritas come in a wide assortment of flavors such as pineapple, strawberry, mango, jalapeno (with freshly roasted jalapenos), and Midori, plus frozen margaritas, swirls, and specials such as a “skinny” peach margarita.

There are enough big screen TVs to watch NFL games, and on Sundays, a pint of draft beer is $4.50.